JANUARY 16, 1948
WASHINGTON, Thursday—I came down to Washington primarily to report to the State Department on the recent session of the United Nations Human Rights Commission in Geneva, and also to see the members of the interdepartmental committee which has worked and will work in the future on the question of human rights.
However, yesterday was devoted to various other activities. First, I spoke at a luncheon of the Women's National Press Club. The president of the club, Miss Ruth Cowan, is one of the newspaper women who went overseas to Africa very early in the war and did some of the pioneering work for women correspondents over there. She saw and felt so much of the tragedy of war that it took her a long time to return to "civilization as usual." I wonder sometimes if any of the people who saw war at close range will ever again think of our civilization in quite the same light as they did before Hitler invaded Poland.
* * *
In the afternoon I visited the office of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial Foundation and was interested to hear at first hand some of the things which had been reported to me in writing about the historical work which has been going forward in the past year.
In the evening, Miss Thompson and I went to a small dinner at the home of one of Washington's best-known and best-loved women correspondents, Mrs. Elisabeth May Craig. She brought together a small group of the newspaper women whom we had known during our years in Washington, as well as a few others, including Mrs. Genevieve Forbes Herrick, the magazine writer, who had come down from Dorset, Vermont, where she and her husband have been living and writing during the past few years.
* * *
Today we return to New York City. This journey between New York and Washington used to be very familiar but I take it rarely these days. I always enjoy seeing my friends in Washington, but New York is a place which can provide plenty of occupation. And of late I have found myself increasingly prone to like my snowbound cottage in the country. Nowhere else do the stars look as bright at night, nor do I ever grow weary of the fields of snow when the setting sun sheds its rosy light over them. I understand better every day David Grayson's book "Adventures in Contentment."
Speaking of books, I have just read part of the manuscript of a book which I think will be of vital interest to every American citizen when it comes out in the near future. The author, Fairfield Osborn, is a scientist but he tells in layman's language something about the world we live in which we should stop and think about now and then.